Friday, 27 February 2009

The Green Hornet Rides Again

Hot news from Hollywood: 'The Green Hornet', the radio/film serial and 60s TV show that introduced the world to the kick-ass moves of Bruce Lee is set for a big-budget remake starring none other than rising slacker Seth Rogen.

Normally, this sort of announcement wouldn't bother me, despite my love of real-deal comic books; however, this is notable because - according to this story from MTV - the director is going to be none other than French mentalist and visual genius Michel Gondry. That means it's going to be fucking awesome.

This confidence may seem ill-advised, given Hollywood's ability to completely fuck up decent source material ('Constantine' being just one example, and every appendage is crossed in the hope that 'Watchmen' delivers this weekend), but Monsieur Gondry has demonstrated his ability and flair in both the short and feature format so I reckon it's in pretty good hands.

To prove his breadth, let's have a look at this little short, commissioned for the reopening of the Forum des Images in Paris:

Thursday, 26 February 2009

Attention Deficit

Right. Pay Attention.

Difficult, isn't it?

Well, if you (like my good compadre Ash) find it hard to concentrate for any length of time, don't worry; you are not alone. In fact, this article on The Wired blog infers that contemporary technological lifestyles are seriously fucking us - and future generations - up.

The fact that we can be reached wherever and whenever we are by people attempting to communicate with us causes interruption, stress and distraction, and it is our attention and capacity for creative thought that suffers as a result. I could continue, but then there would be little point in bringing the article to your notice in the first place...

On the flipside, technology provides us with tools to share knowledge in ways that simply were not possible before... check ZeFrank's take on information compression from his stint doing 'The Show' a few years ago by clicking here.

Don't worry; the video is only a couple of minutes long, so it shouldn't keep you for too long...

Saturday, 21 February 2009

BONNIE 'PRINCE' BILLY, Man on the Wire

It was only a few months ago that Will Oldham released his last full length album Lie Down in the Light, but already it seems that there is more interest and dare I say hype for his forthcoming release Beware. He's doing press even, which is fairly unusual for such a private chap, but I'm not complaining, infact I'm positively giddy with excitement over new photo's and the chance to see this legend play in a couple of months. The album beware is released as usual on Domino and will be available on Monday 16th March and is already receiving high praise from the like of The Guardian and Independent. You can pre-order it now through Domino Mart.

If you like the above and below photos you can see more of them in the new issue of The Wire magazine or by clicking here. The photo's were taken by Eva Vermandel, you some of you may know from being involved in the Sigur Ros documentary last year. She also produced the book that accompanied Sigur Ros' last album Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust.

Here are the dates you can catch Will Oldham at in the next few months. The London date has sold out but he's worth traveling for.

20/04 - Royal Festival Hall, London, UK
22/04 - AB Bruxelles, Bruxelles, Belgium
23/04 - Paradiso, Amsterdam, Netherlands
24/04 - Cigale, Paris, France
25/04 - Printemps de Bourges Festival, Bourges, France
28/04 - Espace, Torino, Italy
29/04 - Estragon, Bologna, Italy
30/04 - Auditorium San Domenico, Foligno (Perugia), Italy

Friday, 20 February 2009

"HDTV Is Worth Every Cent"

It would appear that The Simpsons has had a shiny new hi-def makeover recently, updating the much-loved titles with even more sight gags:

Quicktime version here.

If you really want to nerd out over the changes, check out the detailed listing over at SimpsonsCrazy.

Personally, I can't believe they got rid of Otto. Or Flanders, for that matter.

Monday, 16 February 2009

The Dude Abides

Good friend of mine and all-round local hero Warren "The Dude" Anderton took his guns out yesterday and won the Fixed Gear Leeds Valentine's Alleycat race, despite a heavy showing of some serious lycra-clad cycle dudes.

This may be of little interest to some of you, but Warren deserves major props at the very least for being an absolute gent and particularly for his tireless efforts postering around town for years, so you good people can know about all the fine gigs happening in this fair city. However, it's mostly an excuse to post this sick portrait of him by his occasional flatmate Dan Medhurst.

If you see Warren out and about, at least shake his hand. Or even buy him a drink. If you think about it, you kind of owe him.

Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Awesome Video Update

Awesome video for Red Fang's new single "Prehistoric Dog" by Rob "Whitey" McConnaughy.

Quicktime here.

If you have seen this movie, the subject matter will seem reasonably familiar.

Monday, 9 February 2009

The Soft Pack debut single out today

"Well I've got news for you" - The Muslims, 2007

The San Diego four piece 'The Soft Pack' formally know as The Muslims (Myspace deleted so don't bother searching) are releasing their much anticipated debut single today entitled 'Nightlife'. The label releasing it is Kemado who are responsible for launching the careers of Dungen, O'Death, The Sword and the awesome and heavily bearded stoner band Vietnam. If you haven't heard The Soft Pack, its okay don't worry they're still relatively new, your safe now. They kind of sound a little like The Strokes first album, mixed with the more commercial stuff from Black Lips and a dash of 13th Floor Elevators. Their tracks are instantaneously catchy and have great melodies, thus I believe they will be pretty massive this year.

Check their video for Extinction, recorded whilst they were known as 'The Muslims'. Press HERE for visual and aural stimulation.

Thursday, 5 February 2009

Lux Interior 1946 - 2009

Okay, so we failed to comment on the sad passing of John Martyn last week, but there was enough people bigging him up, so we thought we could let it slide.

However, today's news that The Cramps' Lux Interior, aka Erick Lee Purkhiser, passed away yesterday from a pre-existing heart condition is worth noting.

As a tribute, here's some footage from their legendary 1978 gig at Napa State Hospital. Mentals ahoy!

New ABE VIGODA EP out next week!

"We run through the dead city"

New shit already? Sweet! LA based four piece Abe Vigoda are releasing a new EP on Post Present Medium on 17th February 2009. The EP features 5 brand new tracks and although its not a billion light years ahead of Skeleton it does establish them firmly as a force of nonsense and shoegazing to be reckoned with. XLR8R online magazine is hosting a free download on the track DON'T LIE which is the lead track from the new release (see below).

Pre order the EP from HERE.

Abe Vigoda - Don't Lie (MP3)

If you still can't get enough of the boys check out their blogspot and while you're at it pop in and say hi to The Mae Shi too as they started their new blog in December. Rock'n'Rolla!

Skart Attack

Following on from our last post, all you culture vultures out there should cruise over to BoingBoing and check out the new four part series of videos focussing on Shepard Fairey and photographic genius Glen E. Friedman, based on conversations held around Friedman's exhibition at Shep's Subliminal Projects space.

There's another discussion of Shep's Obama portrait (and you can watch Shep get grilled by legendary interviewer Charlie Rose about his poster, and the rest of his work HERE), and Friedman discusses how he got into photography through skateboarding and punk rock and his work for practically every seminal hip-hop artist/act, including repeated shots of the Beastie Boys, Public Enemy, Run DMC and just about everybody else on Def Jam when it started.

Check Friedman's work out here and peep the video on skate and punk rock photography below:

The other videos are on BoingBoing, or on their YouTube channel, and you can even subscribe to their daily podcast .

Watch and learn.

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

"For The Best In Men's Clothing..."

It would appear that the Beastie Boys have had the genius idea to re-issue their seminal 1989 album 'Paul's Boutique' in a 20th Anniversary edition which you should all go out and buy, even if you already own it.

Described as "the first and most probably only hip hop record ever to be likened to Abbey Road, Dark Side Of The Moon and Pet Sounds" over at The Berrics, this is STILL the best Beasties album for its incredible use of samples alone (check the nerd-list of them all here), years before DJ Shadow got everybody hot under the collar about crate-digging, and receiving cult status as a result. For major B-Boy nerds, you can download an audio commentary off their website and you can listen to them rambling inanely about recording the album and living in LA in the late eighties.

To celebrate this, let's have a look at the video for 'Shadrach', probably (well, at least in my opinion) one of the best videos ever expressing the chaos of the live music experience...

Monday, 2 February 2009

Why do PETER, BJORN & JOHN always have the sweetest artwork?

"From that day on, till I hit the bed, Amsterdam was stuck in my head" - Amsterdam by Peter, Bjorn & John

The answer to the proposed question is obviously, because they have good taste and are on a record label which allows them fairly loose creative control. There's nothing worse than looking forward to an album for months and then being completely let down because the artwork is shit. That may seem shallow but all my favourite records have something interesting about the front covers, its all part of how them become your favourite albums isn't it? Like when you see it in the shop window or desperately searching at a record fair, you become elated when you see that cover. I'm not sure who designed the new artwork for Peter, Bjorn And John's latest album, I've searched but to no avail. However I do know that a guy called Graham Samuels from Sweden designed the sleeves for their last album 'Writers Block' and also the singles released off it.

He also does adverts for what look like 70's laptops, although I think its more likely to be the Canadian media site

Graham Samuels was also commissioned last year to produce a mini promo for Hewlet Packard called Serena' Sugar Fly' Williams KNOWLEDGE IS POWER, whose a 70's Blaxplotation character that enjoys forcing children to read using her special powers of threatening behavior, sign language and cliched ghetto terminology.

Peter, Bjorn And John's new album 'Living Thing' will be released on Monday 30th March 2009 and can be pre-ordered from HERE.